Now the lovely ripple lace effect that trims this shawl is showing its face. It’s a very friendly lace pattern—this would make an excellent introduction to lacework for a knitter looking to expand her skills. With a few well-placed markers to identify the repeats, even a beginner could tackle this with confidence (provided, of course, he or she were duly warned about the dangers of row 6!)
Even in a pattern as simple as this, stitch markers are a smart knitter’s friend. I utilize different colored markers, too—my favorite are the pea-sized ones designed for the smaller needles used in most lacework. In this case, two green markers sit on either side of the crucial center stitch. Two colored ones mark the one repeat on each side that has an extra stitch on either end. Black markers indicate the other standard repeats. These help me know exactly where I am in the row, and ensure I catch mistakes before they become disasters—well, most of the time.
With the lace rhythm settled in my head, I’m taking great pleasure in my progress, enjoying how the scalloped edges emerge from the straight lines of my needles. That’s the wonder of knitting—watching a the thing take shape right under your fingers.
If you're so inclined, add a comment to share your favorite stitch markers, or just the most useful way they’ve helped you in your recent knitting. Let’s all pay tribute to the virtues of stitch markers!